March 26th, 2020 – Quarantine life seems to consist of relying heavily on binging any and all shows that take our minds off of a global pandemic for an hour or two (or seven). It’s a time to catch up on old shows that passed us by and new ones that are thankfully still being released. If you rode the Game of Thrones train while it was airing but are still looking for murder, mayhem, and a wild cast of characters, go ahead and click play on Tiger King.
All that will be required of you is to trade dragons for tigers. Bewilderment is coming.
The seven-part Netflix docuseries revolves around the world of exotic pet ownership and the lengths people will go to keep their big cat worlds alive. If that description doesn’t seem salacious enough, just know that two of the main characters are named “Joe Exotic” and “Bhagavan ‘Doc’ Antle” and their main nemesis is a woman named Carole who runs a big cat rescue (where she also locks up tigers) and was a prime suspect in her late husband’s disappearance.
Oh, and there’s a former cocaine drug lord who many believe to be the inspiration for Scarface. And, again, Carole is accused of feeding her husband to tigers.
The doc was directed by Eric Goode and Rebecca Chaiklin and shot to the number one streaming slot on Netflix within days of its release. While some viewers have criticized the show for emphasizing sensationalism over substance, it still dives into meaty debates (aside from the expired hot dogs Joe Exotic buys from Walmart) such as breeding, wildlife preservation, legislation and PETA’s extreme tactics in protesting exotic pet ownership.
Let’s be honest, though, when Doc creates a quasi-sex cult at his zoo and Joe Exotic manages to get two straight guys to marry him, the sensationalism wins. So, drink that next glass of wine, try to remember what day it is, and enjoy the best Tiger King jokes we could wrangle up!